7 Managed Drupal Hosting Platform for Better Speed

As a person who is managing a site which is built on Drupal, you have to be very vigilant in decision making. Because the performance of your business website will be crucial for the satisfaction of your customers. Therefore maintaining a Drupal site is not easy as it seems.

Why you should choose Drupal?

Some of you won’t agree with me for Drupal as a framework while keeping WordPress as the number one CMS option. Let me explain.

Even though Drupal is not the simplest CMS to master, there are certain benefits within its complexity. As an example, Drupal has more customization options and flexibility than WordPress. And also it can tackle multiple users and complicated content structures within the Drupal environment. It may be somewhat difficult if you are naive. But, you can learn very easily.

If you are using Drupal you can be pretty sure that your content is optimized and ready to get traffic. That is because websites that run on Drupal are compliant with web standards. And also Drupal has a dedicated community with expert guides and lively forums that are ready to help you and you can exchange your ideas even. Just like the culture of open-source software.

 

Hosting your business with Drupal

First of all, if you are planning to run your website on an advanced platform like Drupal, you have to find a web host that can match the setup. Selecting the exact web host for your Drupal site is the most important thing. Given below are some Drupal platforms that are proven to give the best service for any type of business.

Nexcess

Being a part of the Liquid Web Family, Nexcess has introduced a variety of plans starting from $29/month. The best thing is Nexcess supports auto-scaling; you will be able to start from a lower plan then you can change as your business grows.


You can manage your site and server and view in-depth analytics from their client portal. Additionally, Nexcess offers some features like the ones that are given below, along with Drush for efficient management.

  • Dev/Staging site including database scrubbing. ( You will be able to test everything without pushing to live site)
  • 24/7/365 email and phone support
  • If you accept the payment, they will help you to deal with PCI requirement
  • If the things go wrong or stop, auto service restarts
  • Development tools like Git, SFTP, Mercurial, Composter and SSH

And also Nexcess can provide you a free one-time migration. Regarding the enterprise hosting plans, they start from $1499.95 plus devoted servers with clustering. The following diagram shows the ordinary architecture.

There is a 30-day money-back guarantee for every plan!

A2 Hosting

This particular hosting gives you Drupal-approved support with 20* faster websites. A2 Hosting uses SwiftServers to provide supersonic website speed and superior performance.

They will offer you,

  • Pre-installed, optimized Drupal software
  • Free SSDs
  • Server location as you prefer
  • Free HackScan protection
  • 99.9% uptime guarantee
  • Anytime Money back guarantee
  • Free account migration

Kamatera

As they claim, Kamatera allows you to create and host your sites with their super-fast servers within about 60 seconds. Drupal is amongst their offerings. From the number of CPUs to your preferred data center, you can customize each and every aspect via Kamatera.
The starting price will be $4/month. As Kamatera servers are globally available, you can select the host close to your audience.

Given below are the best features of Kamatera.

  • Customizable pricing
  • User-friendly management console
  • Flexible storage adjustment
  • 24/7 technical support via phone, email, or help ticket.
  • Designated account manager

Pantheon

Pantheon company says they are the fastest web hosting service for Drupal websites. They also have a global Content Delivery Network that is guaranteed for faster site load times. The best offers from Pantheon are,

  • Managed Drupal hosting
  • Nightly database and site backups
  • Multiple environments for site development
  • Automated updates
  • Automated workflows
  • The Pantheon basic plan is $29/month and the performance plan is $114/month.

 

SiteGround

SiteGround is very popular amongst the casual site owners and bloggers. But it also offers premium Drupal hosting for enterprise and large organizations. With the help of GrowBig and GoGeek hosting plans, they are capable to tackle the demands of hosting a high-traffic, user-heavy site.

The following are the Drupal-based hosting offers of SiteGround.

  • Easy Drupal installation (Just one click away)
  • Transfer an existing Drupal site without downtime
  • Drush enabled
  • Daily Backups
  • Drupal expert assistance via chat, email and/helpdesk ticket
  • Dynamic NGINX caching (only available on GrowBig and GoGeek plans)

 

Hostinger

Gives you a reasonably low cost, shared Drupal hosting with the same features as other expensive hosting providers. Currently, their hosting plans are on sale (up to 90% off). So you will be able to buy website hosting for $0.8 per month. The original price of single shared hosting will be $7.99 per month. Another good thing is Hostinger provides Premium and Business hosting plans for both its shared hosting and cloud hosting services. Guaranteed site speed is 3 times faster in the Cloud hosting plan but quite expensive than Shared Hosting.

Both Cloud and Shared Hosting plans offer you the following features.

  • Cloudflare integration
  • 30-day money-back guarantee
  • Free domain for premium and business and all Cloud Hosting plans
  • Speed is optimized to match with the Drupal framework
  • Weekly and daily backups (premium and business plans)
  • Drupal support by experts
  • One-click Drupal installation

 

Acquia

Acquia is geared mainly towards businesses that want to scale or grow their sites with a trusted and established web host. Apart from hosting, Acquia provides development tools and enterprise-grade security for websites and even applications to perform adequately. You will realize their dedication to site developers and business owners once you started working with them.
Basically Acquia has,

  • Continued Drupal updates
  • Uptime of 99.95%
  • Powerful tools like Slack Metrics and Acquia Insights
  • 24/7 technical support
  • Global and industry standardized security

 



Summary

While building a business website, there are several factors to consider. Starting from speed to security and support to pricing. Before jumping into managing a business website, first, you have to be familiar with all the features of the hosting companies. Fortunately, all of the above offers managed hosting so you don’t have to worry about server management, server infrastructure, configuration, and software installation.

But if you are capable of setting the Drupal infrastructure by yourself and planning to do so, just read about cloud hosting platforms like Google Cloud, AWS, and DigitalOcean.

A2 Hosting Review

Today I am going to present you another web hosting review. That is about A2 web hosting.
A2 Hosting is started in 2001 and offered some of the fastest server speeds within the past two years. And also with excellent customer support, developer-friendly hosting plans, and “anytime” money-back guarantee even.

It’s uptime fluctuated over the past few months. And once your first purchase period ends, their renewal rates jump vigorously.

Furthermore, if you are looking for a hosting company with a faster web hosting service and quite cheap pricing around $2.96 per month, A2 Hosting will be a pretty good choice.
Keep reading to get an idea about A2 Hosting.

General Information and Hosting Overview

OUR VERDICT Fastest Shared Web Host
SPEED 317ms (February 2018 to January 2020 average)
UPTIME 99.93% (February 2018 to January 2020 average)
SUPPORT 24/7 Live Chat
APPS WordPress, Joomla, Drupal, and Magento
FEATURES Unlimited Bandwidth and Storage, Free SSL, Anytime Money Back
HOSTING PLANS Shared, WordPress, VPS, Reseller and Dedicated Servers
SITE TRANSFER Single Free Site Transfer
PRICING Starting at $2.96/mo (renews at $8.99/mo)
Our Free Support  Yes

 

Advantages of using A2 Hosting

The main pros of A2 Hosting are their super speed, friendly customer service, very good security features, the liberal refund policy, and even they are environmentally conscious. Let’s have a look at them.

Fastest Shared Hosting Provider (317ms)

When you go to A2Hosting.com you will see a recurring theme: Speed!
Starting from the homepage they talk about the speed. Almost all their features are designed to make your site super fast. Similarly, their pricing plans are named Swift and Turbo, etc.
Without any doubt, we can assure you that A2 Hosting is the fastest shared hosting provider among the ones we have tested. And they are being the fastest for several years also. As you already know, page loading time is a key factor to keep the website visitor around!

A2 Hosting average load times:

 

Friendly and Efficient Customer Support

If you want to find a quick solution for your issue, A2 Hosting gives hundreds of articles in their knowledge base. So, you can refer to them anytime.
But if you are looking for live chat support, they are ready to provide everything from chat to phone and ticket-based help.
During our review, we tried to contact the live chat. But it took around five minutes to connect to the live chat session.
Even though the beginning was too slow, the rest of it went great.

Our guy Julio was very cooperative answering all our questions straight away within about 30 seconds. It doesn’t seem like he wanted to refer or anything like that. When considering the whole thing, it was good.

 

Free “HackScan” keeps your site safe

Usually, extra scanning, firewalls, or layers of encryption slow down the users. Therefore online, speed and security don’t go hand in hand all the time.
But fortunately, A2 Hosting is capable to preserve the speed without affecting security. That is because their servers are secured by “HackScan, which is a 24/7 monitoring service that scans for malware and all other cyber attacks. As prevention is always better than cure, you must avoid the issues before they cause problems. That way your site will be kept safe.
And also using A2 Hosting will protect you if a denial of service attack (DDoS) comes in. The particular attacks try to flood your servers with traffic and make your site go offline. So you don’t have to worry about that if you are with A2 Hosting!

 

Free Site Migrations

A piece of very good news is A2 Hosting will move your existing website to their servers without costing you a buck. Just contact their customer support department with your cPanel account credentials, that’s all.
You should only consider the number of sites, based on your purchased plan. You can learn more by reading their terms.
If you are planning to get Lite, Swift, or Turbo you will only get a single site migration for free. But if you are buying the reseller, dedicated, or managed VPS hosting you will get 25 migrations for free.
But there is a special point. That is the migration will be 100% free if you are providing cPanel access to your existing sites. Or else they will charge a small amount for additional work.

 

Content Management Systems (CMS), Website Builders and Developer Friendly Tools

With all main content management systems, A2 Hosting works smoothly. You will be able to install a WordPress, OpenCart, Drupal, Joomla, or Magento site without developer help.
For those sites, A2 Hosting offers special features. Ex: A2 optimized WordPress plugin with Turbo plans.

Furthermore, A2 Hosting has its own website builder, known as SiteBuilder. If you are searching for a tool to customize your site without googling a single HTML tag, the SiteBuilder will be a very good choice. But don’t forget that the pricing and plans are quite different than the normally shared hosting plans.
Additionally, A2 Hosting is compatible with a Cloudflare CDN account. So that will load images and large files separate from your server, making your site super fast.
A2 Hosting also provides tools to webmasters or agencies to host multiple sites under one roof. Those are admin level access on servers, free server rewind backups, and several versions from PHP to MySQL, PostgreSQL, Python, etc.

 

Anytime Money-Back Guarantee

Previously A2 Hosting had the ordinary 30-day money-back guarantee. But they have changed that to an “anytime” money-back guarantee.
So that you will be able to ask for a refund even after one year or two years. And get a prorated amount back for the remaining time.
But there are some facts you need to understand.
The first one is any refund request after the first 120 days will be issued via PayPal. And additional services (domain registrations, set up, or migration fees) are non-refundable.

 

Green Web Hosting

The hometown of A2 Hosting is Ann Arbor, Michigan which is also known as the “Tree Town.” As they claim they have 50,000 trees and 150 parks giving a moral obligation to help protect the earth from global warming.
Moreover, they have joined with Carbonfund.org to support recyclable energies and reforestation. And also have a “FutureServe” green hosting initiative to help offset emissions from their servers.
Although this is not something that is helpful to you when choosing a web hosting company, it is nice to know that you are also a part of their green web hosting.

 

99.93% Uptime

When we first signed up (in 2015), the uptime of A2 Hosting was pretty good. However, we have noticed a little reduction in performance during the past two years.
But somehow they have managed to achieve a standard result of 99.93%.

Average uptime during last year:

  • January 2020 average uptime: 99.99%
  • December 2019 average uptime: 100%
  •  November 2019 average uptime: 100%
  • October 2019 average uptime: 99.99%
  • September 2019 average uptime: 99.99%
  •  August 2019 average uptime: 99.95%
  • July 2019 average uptime: 99.85%
  • June 2019 average uptime: 99.70%
  •  May 2019 average uptime: 99.98%
  • April 2019 average uptime: 99.99%
  • March 2019 average uptime: 99.83%
  •  February 2019 average uptime: 99.94%

 

Disadvantages of A2 Hosting

Apart from those pros, A2 Hosting has some cons also. Let’s take a look at them.

 

High Renewal Rates and 15 Day Deadline

As I have already mentioned in some previous reviews, prepaying for three years will save a couple of bucks from the monthly price, which may add over the course of 36 months.
A2 has given a better deal to its clients with special introductory pricing that is around half of the normal price!

But when the initial term completed, automatic renewal will come into play and switch the pricing to the “regular” one. This is a trick used by most of the web hosts. So be aware of that.
As their terms say, you must submit a written cancellation request “15 days before the beginning of the Renewal Term” via their customer portal or by emailing them at billing@a2hosting.com.
Now you may be thinking that what if you miss the 15-day window? Let me answer. You will be at the end of paying the next renewal plan, that will renew automatically. You won’t be eligible to receive any kind of refund.

 

Limitations on Cheapest Plan

Now the introductory price for the least expensive hosting option in A2 Hosting is $2.96 per month. Even though that is not the lowest price we have seen, that’s quite good.
However, if you compare the price with the service, there will be some incompatibilities. The Lite plan (which I mentioned in the above paragraph) will give you only one website, unlimited storage, a free SSL, the site migration, and anytime money-back guarantee. We think those are not enough to make A2 Hosting better than other servers like Turbo. They will offer “up to 20* faster page loads”, server rewinds, and offsite backups even.
That will be similar to their website builder plan also. The least expensivExpensive option gives you only a single page for $4 per month. You will realize, that it is not satisfactory to create a website.

 

A2 Hosting Pricing, Hosting Plans and Quick Facts

The following are the shared hosting plans of A2 Hosting.

Important: If you use the “Wdbegginer” coupon, you can get discounts.

  • Ease of sign up
    Just three steps. Quite easy.
  • Payment methods
    Credit card, PayPal, Check or Money Order, Bank Transfer, Skrill, PayULatam
  • Hidden Fees and Clauses
    Higher renewal rates than the introductory period. Make sure to cancel 15 days before the Renewal period, or else you will be charged automatically. Please keep in mind that domain name purchases are not refundable and only one site migration is free of charge on their shared hosting plans.
  • Upsells
    Very less
  • Account Activation
    Very quick
  • Control Panel and Dashboard
    cPanel
  • Installation of Apps and CMSs (WordPress, Joomla likewise)
    Available at checkout

 

What is our recommendation?

Yes. We recommend the A2 Hosting.

During the past few years, A2 Hosting has given a reasonably best speed. All of their shared plans come with a free SSL certificate and single free migration. And also they have a very friendly and cooperative customer support. Additionally, the uptime is also good.

And the best thing is if you have problems as a client you can ask for a refund at any time.
The bad things are higher renewal rates and although you bought the most expensive Turbo plan they only give you a single free site migration.

So in conclusion, A2 Hosting is somewhat good, but it is not the best we have seen either.